Legend

Legend

Paperback | April 16, 2013

byMarie Lu

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"Legend doesn't merely survive the hype, it deserves it."

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Young Elites


What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.

From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.

Full of nonstop action, suspense, and romance, this novel is sure to move readers as much as it thrills.

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Legend

Paperback | April 16, 2013
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$11.63 online $12.99 (save 10%)

From the Publisher

"Legend doesn't merely survive the hype, it deserves it."From the New York Times bestselling author of The Young Elites What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a ...

New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu (www.marielu.org) graduated from the University of Southern California and jumped into the video game industry, working for Disney Interactive Studios as a Flash artist. Now a full-time writer, she spends her spare time reading, drawing, playing Assassin’s Creed, and getting stuck in traffic. ...

other books by Marie Lu

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The Midnight Star

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The Young Elites
The Young Elites

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Legend Trilogy Boxed Set
Legend Trilogy Boxed Set

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:352 pages, 8.19 × 5.5 × 0.86 inPublished:April 16, 2013Publisher:Penguin Young Readers GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:014242207X

ISBN - 13:9780142422076

Customer Reviews of Legend

Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from This is the one, let me tell you Haha, this book. This book! it was the fastest thing I have ever read, and the entire thing was compulsively entertaining. There was not a single moment where I was just hoping the book would just get on with it. I mean, I mean, it wasn't like the book had you at the edge of seat for the whole thing or anything, but there was enough of everything, and for a quick read, this was what I needed.
Date published: 2016-12-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from One of the better dystopian novels I'm usually not a fan of YA dystopian novels, but this one is an exception. The story was actually well-written (for once), and I found myself drawn the story of between the two characters. The author really did a good job in creating complex characters, and it was great to read. It feels like most dystopian authors are just spitting out meaningless stories to make their own creation of an unpleasant world work. Thank you, Marie Lu, for actually doing a good job on the writing part.
Date published: 2016-12-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fabulous! My favourite teen dystopian novel to date. Marie Lu is a former game designer which makes so much sense because her writing makes you feel like you are watching a movie (in the best way)! The characters are likeable and interesting. The book has the right amount of romance, comedy, adventure and suspense.
Date published: 2016-11-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing book Read this book a couple years ago and still love it today. #plumreviews
Date published: 2016-11-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! Great book and story!
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from BRILLIANT As an Asian girl growing up in Canada and media that predominantly showcases Caucasians, as a very arty person, I grew up thinking I cannot pursue anything I love. I thought I was forced to go study sciences or other things that I wasn't passionate about. I thought, because of my ethnicity that my options are limited. But when this book came out and the main characters were mixed written by an Asian, many things flew into my mind. First off, when I read the book, I didn't regard the author's ethnicity and just read it. It was amazing in general, the story, the characters, overall writing was amazing. It had the perfect balance of romance, action, and mystery and I love me a strong female character. After I finished the novel, I felt like I could achieve anything because of the protagonist and Marie Lu showed that ethnicity does not affect the amount of success you would achieve. Love the story and the real life inspiration!
Date published: 2016-11-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic book!! Legend is the first in a three book series written by the author Marie Lu. Now I heard about this book from my wife who is an extreme book nerd herself. She had some positive things to say about it, so I figured why not. I'm always looking for a good book to read. I would like to start off by saying I really like the cover. It's flashy and almost mysterious. Also, the feel of the cover with its raised lettering and symbol is an interesting addition to a cover, and quit creative I do have to say. Anyhow obviously I was attracted to this book when I heard it was a dystopian. Not going to lie, I am huge into dystopians. I mean, who doesn't wonder what could happen I the future. This book had two great main characters, that the book switched view points between every chapter. At the end of every chapter, it made you want to read more, to see the other side of the story. It was almost like reading two books. The main character Day, a street wise kid that rebelled against the republic and June which was on the republics side. Considering each other enemies at the start, but eventually coming together for mutual cause. Both characters had strong personalities, even June was a very strong female character. That I think made the story even more interesting. I am not one for love stories, but this was one that seemed to be more appealing. A lot of action, and a lot of progression in the story. I was really impressed with the way Marie Lu put the characters together and explained their reasoning for their positions in the book. A good read as far as I'm concerned. I definitely have to say a five star book that made me wanting more in the end. Would I recommend this read? Definitely if your into dystopians and are not looking for a mushy romance story. If your want a book that makes you keep wondering what is going to happen in the next chapter, then this is something I would suggest for you. I enjoyed it all around and am happy to have it as part of my book shelf collection.
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Sci-Fi/Dystopian I love how realistic Marie Lu's futuristic world is! It's scary how much I can actually see something like this happening in today's world. I love the intelligent and street smart characters, they are brilliant! I love them so much :') I finished this book in 2 days and reread it thousands of times. Waiting for the next book was excruciating so make sure you are prepared to wait unless you go out and buy the whole series at once. Then you're good to go.
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Dystopian Another Marie Lu book? Heck yes. She is a fantastic author who writes the most amazing trilogies. I love them all! This book is set in a dystopian world that is actually possible (don't ask me how). There's kick-ass characters, sarcastic remarks, and it all happens in a wonderfully developed world that you easily slip right into. You will not want to put these books down!
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from great start to series Legend was a pleasurable read with some badass characters. It's a good start to the trilogy and I'm looking forward to reading the second book!
Date published: 2016-11-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! I loved this trilogy!!!! Day and June are two of my favourite characters of all time. Marie Lu's writing is fantastic.
Date published: 2016-10-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Start to the Series! Let me sum up my feeling about this book in some short sentences. I love Day. I love June. I hate Thomas. I hate this book's government (a lot). The Patriots are pretty cool. The ending was fantastic. Anyways, this book was awesome! For the first 100 pages, it was slow and I couldn't get into it. I thought I was going to hate it, but after those 100 pages the story pulled me in. The characters were so easy to connect to and picture. First we have Day, the criminal. At first I didn't like him very much but as the story went on my love grew for him and I started feeling sympathy towards him. Then we have June, the kick ass female main who got on my neves at first but then I realized some of the things she was doing were leading to something else. Day's family was so adorable and I wish there was more of them but the fact that Day is a criminal didn't help! I love the whole concept of this book and there were a lot of parts I read that made my jaw drop. There were so many plot twists that I didn't see coming and those made me love the story even more! The ending was pretty sad. I really love that character's attitude/bravery. I'm not completely happy with the way the ending played out (since I did get a bit emotional) but it made it so that the second book has a lot of potential! I've heard this trilogy just gets better so I'm looking forward to continuing! I really love Marie Lu's writing style! I'm probably going to read another book in between this one and the second book since I don't think I'm emotionally prepared for what the next book has in store aha. If you haven't read this fantastic book, GO READ IT!!
Date published: 2016-04-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from MY FAV SERIES!! Leeeegeend!! I literally could feel every word I read ripped my heart out. I know I am really emotional and cry for everything, but seriously, I was already crying in -not even- page 40... and ever since. Loved (and hate at the same time) the characters. Loved the story and the way is written. Some stuff were pretty obvious but I still felt all the emotions when it happend. Honestly I BELIVE it's worth reading.
Date published: 2016-04-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVE LOVE LOVE This is a great book. Action packed, suspenseful. brilliant all in all. Always keeps you guessing and the ending is a MAJOR plot twist. Never read anything like it.
Date published: 2015-10-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Slow and uninspiring. I probably had set my expectations too high when getting this book because I got very disappointed. Not only did I find the story to be slow and hard to keep track of, there were just not enough momentum to keep my interest. I forced myself to read it and struggled with completing at least one chapter each night. The book is also riddled with completely unnecessary parts that could easily have been deleted from the book. I mean seriously, what's the point in having a 1000 word long scene describing the main characters dream and then ending it with something in the line of: "and then I woke up and don't remember a thing"? Then whyyyy did I have to read about it? It doesn't do anything to the story, nor to the characters development, it's just rambling. There were good parts in it for sure and it's definitely not the worst I have read, but I just can't see the hype and the praise it got.
Date published: 2015-09-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible Read! This book was amazing. Very strong plot line, and very dystopian, so if you're not into that then don't bother reading this book. Both Day and June are strong, well-developed characters, and their different perspectives are fascinating. I would definitely recommend this book!
Date published: 2015-07-20
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Umm I'm not to sure about this one, on one hand I enjoyed it on the other it was jumpy and had a pretty shallow plot in my opinion. But please don't let my review stop you from reading this I'm merely stating my thoughts on it.
Date published: 2015-05-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing! This as an amazing book, I truly loved the ending. But it was a bit predictable in the beginning. Even if it was a bit predictable I was surprised in a few parts. I recommend this book for all reader's out there.
Date published: 2015-04-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved It Its unique, enjoyable and makes you unable to put down the book. I was hooked from the very first chapter! READ IT !
Date published: 2015-03-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awsome The book is awsome and intreging #joe basket aaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwsssssssssssoooooooooonnnnmnmm33333330- .
Date published: 2015-02-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very good Loved it. Was interesting and sucked yew into the characters and storyline. Built a fairly strong background for the characters as well.
Date published: 2015-01-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from You Have To Read! I Couldn't Stop Reading Once I Started
Date published: 2014-12-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A MUST READ BOOK. It Was Very Exciting And Thrilling With No Dull or Boring Moments. Once I Started Reading I Couldn't Stop. I NEVER Found Myself Bored Not Even Once. I Would Recommend This Book To EVERYBODY I know. You Should Read This Book!
Date published: 2014-12-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Anden I liked anden in this book (and the rest of them)
Date published: 2014-07-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Legend Great read, took me a bit to get into it but then it was a page turner.
Date published: 2014-05-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Phenomenal One of the best YA novels ever. Hands down.
Date published: 2014-04-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Phenomenal This book was great! Finished it in two days. The character development is supurb and there are lots of nice plot twists thrown in. A definite read.
Date published: 2014-01-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Phenomenal Great book, highly recommended. The characters are really lovable and if you love Divergent and the Hunger Games you will definitely love this book. Could not put it down
Date published: 2014-01-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good book Characters don't have much depth, so I'm not itching to read the 2nd book. Overall its a decent read.
Date published: 2014-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from SOOOOOO GOOOD!!!!! when i fist bought this book i did not expect a lot from it . After reading this book i can honestly say it one of my favorites . Never was i bored , it kept me on my toes through the book . i loved the romance between June and day.i think all dystopian readers should get this book <3
Date published: 2013-12-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book So good so sad so funny
Date published: 2013-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book After the Hunger Games Trilogy and Insurgent I thought I was done with dystopian books. A friend of mine told me I HAD to read legend. I bought the book and finally reluctantly picked it up and got so swept up in the story of Day and June that I now am reluctant to read Prodigy until the last book Champion is released so I can read them back to back!!!!
Date published: 2013-10-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great book! This book was so good! it was pretty fast paced, and there was almost always a cliff hanger at the end of each chapter. i really liked hearing from the two different characters perspectives. you should definitely read this book, it is one of my favourites and i cant wait to read Prodigy!
Date published: 2013-09-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Legend If you liked hunger games you will have the same feelings for this book. I just hope it has a brighter ending than the depressing one in Mockingbird :-P
Date published: 2013-08-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from wow great book. made me want to keep reading.
Date published: 2013-08-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book! This is another great book about a dystopian society. Can't to read the next book in this trilogy.
Date published: 2013-08-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic Read Legend deserves great reviews as the story is well written and the characters are interesting. This book has the potential to be one of the best teen books written in terms of combining story and action. Very good read.
Date published: 2013-06-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Action Packed dystopian for fans of Maze Runner, Divergent, Hunger Games Originally published on http://bibliophilesisters.wordpress.com/ This is the first book in a dystopian trilogy which takes place in the year 2130 in what was once known as the Western United States of America. Following societal changes this area is now the new Republic. The other states have formed what is known as the colonies, and these two nations are in the midst of a new civil war. There is even greater divide of the classes which is evident upon seeing the millions of people crowded in the slums battling the ever mutating plague. They fight for everything as evidenced by the “skiz fights” back alley brawls people bet on to make a buck. At the same time the elite live in luxury skyscrapers with university education, military training and coveted electricity. To separate the weak from the elite the Republic requires every 10 year old to be tested by the trials. This is a vigorous test consisting of a written, oral and physical portion. Those who fail are sentenced to a lifetime in a labor camp. In this story we meet two very different characters from complete opposite ends of a social spectrum. June was born into one of the elite families and was raised in one of the wealthiest areas. Her parents were killed in a car crash which left her older brother Metias to raise her. She may only be 15 years old but she is very analytical and smart and is being primed to become one of the military’s greatest. She is a military prodigy since she was the only one to receive a perfect score on her trials. Then there is Day he might be a handsome 15 year old guy with blond hair and bright blue eyes, but he is the Republics most wanted criminal. Born in the slums he failed his trial and was barely able to escape. Since that time he has had it out for the Republic: bombing buildings, stealing money and medicines means he has quickly become enemy number one, but maybe his motives might not be what they seem. These two are from completely different worlds, and yet they have more in common it seems. There really wasn’t any reason for their paths to cross until one of Day’s missions goes wrong and Metias ends up dead. June takes it in her own hands to track Day down and bring him to justice to avenge her brother. She is the only person with the ability and determination to accomplish this mission, and soon she finds she is successful, but what if everything is not as it seems? I really enjoyed this book. I listened to the audio book and also read from the novel. Let’s talk about the actual book first. I like the clean simple cover; the silver background with the gold emblem is catching to the eye. I feel this cover will attract both males and females. Then when we get into the story it is told in alternating POV chapters. Junes are in one black font and Day’s are in a different gold font. I like this touch (Just like Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult) it helps keep who is talking straight. The story is fast paced and reads like a movie, but I definitely felt that some of the elements of the story were predictable. I would have liked a little more history about why the Republic and the Colonies were formed. I hope that in subsequent books we will get more of the politics behind this decision. I really liked the characters especially June who was a great heroine. I felt that Marie Lu didn’t waste time on secondary characters. If she talked about a character they play a significant part in the story. I hope that in the next books we see more of Tess. The ending of the book was intense, and the last few chapters were full of drama and action so I can’t wait to pick up the sequel Prodigy which is out now. I also recently found out that there is a novella (Life before Legend) that consists of two short stories from before this book. I will have to check that out. I read an interview with Marie Lu which asked her how she had come up with the idea for Legend. She said that the character Day had been floating around in her brain since she was 15! One day she was watching the movie adaptation of Les Misérables and thought it would be interesting to bring the conflict between Jean Valjean and Javert to a teenage setting since they were so equally matched. The story originally had two lead guys, but when she pitched the story to her boyfriend he suggested making the detective character a girl and June was born! What a great story about how her book was created. I love seeing where authors get their inspirations. The movie rights have been purchased by CBS films. I think this would work well as a movie or TV show. We will have to watch for news about that in the future. I would say definitely pick up Legend if you are a fan of dystopias like Maze Runner, Hunger Games and Divergent.
Date published: 2013-04-17
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Legend by Marie Lu The first thing that I have to comment on are the characters. Day and June – the two characters that are focused on – would be invincible if they didn’t have the weakness of their loved ones holding them back. Characters that are too perfect bother me because even the best soldier has their flaws. Flaws do not include a limp, or a family that could be used against them. Saying this though I realize this is the first book, and there will probably be lots of room for development as the story continues. Although similar to other novels I’ve read like the Hunger Games or Divergent, Legend was still a captivating story for me nonetheless. The similar theme that I’ve seen in other novels made Legend less alluring than I think it would be if I read this one first. There were things that stood out as original. I liked the fighting in the bars and being able to see the street life, then flashing back to fancy uniforms and military protocol. The contrast in the story is obvious and keeps you wondering what is going on with Day as you read about June. The romance between two characters that are complete opposites but seem to have quite a few things in common is adorable, and personally I wanted to see more of it. I guess they were a bit more intent on saving lives and defeating the government and all that stuff. Gets busy I suppose. Check out my blogging website for more reviews! http://insubstanial.blogspot.ca/
Date published: 2013-03-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Captivating and Thrilling! Woah! Legend blew me away! The whole plot and concept is fanatstic, and the characters are truly amazing. I'll start with the things I didn't like so much: as many suprises that came up throughout the book, there was one that i knew from the beginning (I'm not going to give anything away; lets just say that it has something to do with June's brothers death). The part that bothered me was the-i want to say 'lack' but thats not quite the right word-small amount of emotion involving what happened at the end with (one of) Day's brothers. Don't get me wrong, it was definitely a deep and heartfelt situation... Afterward. At the moment of the event, even though it was in Junes P.O.V, I felt it could've been written better. The last thing was the feelins Day and June felt towards each other. It was definitely real, but i felt like it was developed a bit too fast for my liking. Those are really the only things I don't like about Legend. I absolutely loved the characters and the chemistry between them, and the secrets and suprises we learn along the way. Day and June are both similar and different at the same time, if you know what I mean. They are both well developed and deep. All of the characters were amazing and felt like true characters. I really enjoyed Tess and Thomas above all. The writing was so very amazing. I could picture everything happening and loved the way there were short flashbacks into the characters lives before... Well, before everything happened. The suprises and secrets you come across are amazing. And the setting really won me over. Overall, I definitely reccomend Legend! if you are even concidering reading this book, I encourage you to go out and but it! Everything is great about this book-and those 3 things i mentioned earlier didn't make me feel anything less then amazed by this book. I don't even care about them because there are so many other wonderful things about Legend. I can honestly say that I love this book!
Date published: 2013-02-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome This book is awesome, the author did a really great job of describing the scenes and the action. I recommend this book to anyone who liked the Hunger Games, The Maze Runner because you'll LOVE this!!!! This book is also for anyone who is into the action-mystery categories for book. This book should be made into a movie!!
Date published: 2013-01-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from #SWAGGY This book was really amazing. its a dystopian novel but it is definitely one of the bests:)
Date published: 2012-11-26
Rated 3 out of 5 by from I Liked It More reviews at: www.eyesonthepages.blogspot.ca While I don't have much to say about Legend I can say that it was a slow start that picked up surprisingly quick. The way that Lu makes the two main characters run into each other is rather creative and believable and, while it may seem convenient, is what I believe to be incredibly creative. While two separate characters, I found June & Day to be gender copies of one another. Both were incredibly smart, resourceful, and had an enormous sense of pride. I don't know if it was because of this, but unfortunately, Legend wasn't really anything special to me. I definitely liked it - the ending was quite intense - but for the other parts of the book it was just... Likeable. If that makes any sense. All in all, I don't really have much to say about Legend other than the gold colouring for Day's perspective was kinda neat and that I just... Liked this book.
Date published: 2012-07-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Book Review Blog Please go to this site where I review books and sometimes movies. More books though. http://booksblogspot.blogspot.ca/
Date published: 2012-07-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Anxious For More Answers! As usual, the cover! I'm just gonna put this out there by letting ya'll know that I'm not a fan of this cover. I guess there's supposed to be some sort of symbolism in it, but I'm sorry, I just don't see it. I guess this where the saying "don't judge a book by its cover" comes into play. Because this book was totally interesting. It was very fast paced and I finished it in a day- this says a lot because I am probably the slowest reader, turned blogger, you will ever meet. Seriously. I isolated myself from the world around me, and just read. Legend is written in two different POV's; Day and June. Day is this badbutt villian who OBVIOUSLY has a good side to him-how else is he supposed to find true love? and June is the pretty, smart, rebellious girl... quite immpressive. She has all the characteristics that make her irresistable. And yet.. she was boring. Have you ever read a book where the traits of a charactrer are laid out but you don't really see them actually PUT INTO the character? well, this was the only problem with Legend. The characters were just plain boring. Even though I knew that Day was this awesome villian. I just didn't FEEL it. Besides that, the main storyline was a little flat. I love the part of a book where the mystery is being solved and Legend didn't really give me much of that. I'm waiting for the sequel because I assume thats where we'll find out whats actually going on. Legend was quite the cliffhanger and I have a lot of unanswered questions. I rate this book a 3, only because I'm soo anxious for some answers
Date published: 2012-07-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! I can't wait for the next one! I picked this one up during my dystopian book reading binge phase. I had heard good things about it, and figured why not? When I first opened it up, the font colour of the text is divided into Gold and Black. I hadn’t seen anything like it before and for me it definitely distinguished itself. The story is told from two alternating perspectives, the gold text corresponds with Day - the poor, wanted criminal with a heart of gold and the black text corresponds with June - the smart, kick ass girl prodigy of the republic. Although I hear in some versions (likely the second round of prints?) that there is only different fonts that separate June and Day. The cover features the symbol of the Republic which has a great simplistic boldness to it. The symmetry and the colours of gold and silver together create a very totalitarian effect that works with the whole military controlled nation. I loved the feeling of contrast that we got from each world, where everything is clean, expensive and pristine in June’s world versus the dark gritty world of Day. June’s character was a refreshing take on a heroine, she was smart, skilled in combat and strategy, fearless and loyal. She knew what she wanted to do and did it, she didn’t wait for someone to tell her what to do and she didn’t need to be rescued by some boy. In fact she did most of the rescuing if I recall. What really had me cheering was that June could put the pieces of the mystery puzzle together. She didn’t need a huge villain/hero stand off where the villain reveals all the details - these always make me go *face palm* it’s so cliche, and never works in favour of the villain. Her cunning ideas and thirst for vengeance leads her right into her target Day and into the middle of secret government conspiracy that makes her challenge where her own loyalties lie. Upon reading the book description I wholeheartedly thought Day would be the gruff and tough criminal that was constantly causing trouble because of some vendetta he had against the Republic. But boy was I wrong (if anything June is the bad ass action figure). Day was not what I expected - he spends his days surviving and churning up money and supplies to support his family from a distance while causing trouble for the Republic. If anything he kind of reminds me of Robin Hood, the heart of gold outlaw stealing from the rich. It’s the sharp mind, and brute strength combined with his unfaltering humanity that makes him such a lovable character. Of course when you throw a young boy and girl together from opposite worlds in dire life or death circumstances there’s the obligatory hormonal romance. However, with these two, their romance is fuelled by honour and trust which forges a powerful bonds that makes these two a deadly team to try and confront. The villains of this book were at times difficult to distinguish, at one moment they’re friends and you turn around and there’s the barrel of a gun pressed to your head, the circumstances of everyone were ever changing and it kept me on edge and constantly reading to find out the truth of it all. Because the story line is told from two perspectives, we are introduced to conflicting situations throughout- and this really mounted the tension throughout the book because as the reader you want to know what the real account of what went down is. Then when it’s all revealed there was plot points that even all my speculating couldn't predict. This is a great action packed read, and I really can’t wait to see what the next one entails!
Date published: 2012-05-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it I can't wait for the sequel.
Date published: 2012-02-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Decent, but hardly the best June and Day both live in the Republic, but that is where their similarities end. June is the daughter of a highly regarded family and has entered into the military to serve the republic that she so strongly believes in. Day's family lives in the slums and has already survived an attempt on his life by the Republic even though he is but 15. Thrown together after June's brother is murdered - seemingly by Day - the two opposites find out how truly similar they are, and how the Republic is far from what either of them imagined. While this is a decent dystopian teen novel, Legend pales in comparison to the works of Veronica Roth, Suzanne Collins, and Scott Westerfeld. This first novel in the series certainly sets up an interesting model of our future, but one that seems to be made piecemeal of the futures we've been shown by other authors. A fun read, but not as engaging as it was hyped up to be.
Date published: 2012-01-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my favourites!! Another Dystopian tale, yes I love this genre. Why? Because there's always a common enemy, and there's action and loss thrown in with romance. Ahh the romance. What could possibly be going through these charcter's heads when their life is on the line? When there's no hope? Yet they fall in love in the most unlikely of environments and I love it. The pacing is on point with just enough cliffhangers to keep you from turning the page. The mystery involving the Republic is what kept me from putting the book down. I needed to know what happened next and I couldn't stop reading Day and June, two teenagers on the completely different sides of the government. One, a rebel living in the slums, creating chaos for the government. The other, a rich and privileged teenager with the makings of being an agent. The book is unique just because when you are reading Day's point of view, the typeface and color is set differently than June's chapters. I thought that was quite uniqe and beautiful for a book. RATING 5/5 QUOTES “When I look to my side, I see a boy holding out his hand to me. He has bright blue eyes, dirt on his face, and a beat-up old cap on, and at this moment on, I thi j he might be the most beautiful boy I've ever seen.”—June (page 109) “She's pretty in a way that distracts me just like she did in the Skiz ring. No, pretty's not the right word. Beautiful.”—Day (page 113) “You and I may have the same enemy,” I say. “And they've pitted us against each other.”—Day (page 231) “You live in the moment, you die in the moment, you take it all one day at a time.”—Day (page 304)
Date published: 2011-12-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read! Looking for a new Hunger Games? Well, Legend is the book for you. We are in the Republic of Los Angeles, where the United States are a myth. Day is a wanted criminal, performing acts of terrorism on the Republic. June is the prodigy that will hunt him down. The Republic knows what's best and tells only the truth...or does it? With chapters that made my jaw drop, this book will leave you wanting more.
Date published: 2011-12-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Powerfully Addictive! Originally posted at http://dazzlingreads.blogspot.com There was some buzz before Legend's release but It wasn't very noisy. However, from the reviews I read before immersing myself into this story, I knew that I will find excellent material in this book. I only heard great comments about Marie Lu's debut novel and my expectations were pretty high.Oh yes they were. Oh my LORD! Did I say that my expectation were high? Well, Legend certainly reached all of them and went beyond the sky into the outer space! I am sure that Legend will consume readers with its highly addictive story. The dual point of view is masterfully written and I really loved reading from June and Day's perspective as well as experiencing the two different worlds they come from. Day and June are much more than lovable characters, they are admirable! However, I don't feel that the character's age (fifteen) is the most accurate age for them. I think that June and Day are very mature and I would feel much more convinced if the characters were at least seventeen. Yet, we do know from the beginning that June is a prodigy so this is somehow justified. Still, I do feel that the characters are older teens and not fifteen. Regardless this, I love the characters very, very much. June is everything a heroine should be and Day...well...he is the most wanted criminal in the Republic of America and now he certainly is the most wanted hero among the YA readers! I am one of them! Legend is no doubt a solid Hollywood movie material! Twist after twist, this book never stopped surprising me and kept my eyes glued to the pages! To say that there is a Shock Factor in this book is an understatement because just halfway through the book, there was a moment that caused such a big impact on me that I couldn't believe it wasn't the ending or the climax of the book. After such a shocking moment, there were still another 150 pages to go through so imagine how much more I experienced during the entire book! With that said, Marie Lu's brilliant story is more than enough to place her among my favorite authors! I simply can't wait to have more of her books in my hands. Readers should be ready to jump from their seats, to feel their hearts freeze, to often forget how to breathe and to bite their nails to the point of bleeding while reading this book. Legend by Marie Lu is an all-consuming and magnificent debut! Shocking, powerful and addictive, Legend will certainly be a favorite among YA and dystopian lovers! A must-have!
Date published: 2011-12-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from a definite favorite among YA dystopian novels In the crowd of novels chasing the magic of the Hunger Games, few have satisfied my craving for dystopian adventure (and romance). Roth's "Divergent" measured up, and now "Legend" just might as well. If you love this genre or are looking to try it, I recommend this book. I stayed up all night to finish this in one sitting, and can't wait for the sequel (and movie, I hear!). I loved the alternating narration by the protagonists; this was a really effective way of quickly showing how a truly good person can't always tell right and wrong if they've grown up immersed in one side of a conflict. It's fascinating to watch these two young prodigies - each with all the makings of an extraordinary hero but living opposite versions of the same dark world - fight their way toward a parallel destiny. I loved living inside the razor-sharp minds of these kick-ass geniuses, seeing from their perspective as they navigate obstacles with elite skill and intelligence (this brought to mind the impossible feats of other super-agents, like Jack Bauer on 24). I thought the romance aspect was really well-done also.
Date published: 2011-12-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fast paced fun dystopian YA Pros: dystopian/postapocalyptic America, complex world building, intelligent characters, minor romantic elements, fast paced, real concequences for actions, clear POV / Cons: / For Parents: some violence, no language, kissing/ Day is 15, from a poor sector, and the Republic's most wanted criminal: for acts of terrorism and because they can't identify him. He breaks into a hospital to steal plague medicine for a family member and has a run-in with military Captain Metias while trying to escape. / June is also 15, the only person to score a perfect 1500 in the Trials. She's being training for a job in the military. When her brother - and only living relative - Metias is killed by the fugitive Day, she's given the job of hunting him down./ Legend takes place in a future where the U.S. has broken up into the Republic and the Colonies. Electricity is intermittent outside the richer sectors and, due to the war, sometimes even within it. Lu has crafted an intricate world but only shows what the characters would notice or care about, so there's a lot of information regarding class distinctions (especially pointed out by June) but little history or politics outside Los Angeles, where the story takes place. Hopefully later books will add more of such information./ The two teen protagonists tell the story in alternating chapters, with Day's side in a brown font so it's impossible to mix up whose point of view it is. And while both teens are super smart, noticing details and getting into adult problems/situations, they're not angsty at all. The characters face very real consequences for their actions even as they develop feelings for each other./ The pacing is fast and the plot is compelling. If you like dystopian YA, read this.
Date published: 2011-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Vivid, Unique and Realistic! Legend's premise instantly grasped me. This year I've undoubtedly been hooked to dystopian titles. I'm crazy for them! I've rarely been disappointed by them, but yet I've been very choosy about which particular titles I wanted to pick up. Legend was an absolute must read for me and I couldn't wait to read it! Vivid, Unique and Realistic! With a some-what typical setting viewed in most dystopian titles (a crumbling society, rebellions and the sort) I was really intrigued with Marie Lu's developments in regards to the Republic, it's wholesomely divided districts, and the military. With that came the wonderful addition of both June and Day's dual perspectives, two characters from completely different worlds coming together in the most unexpected of ways. It was exciting to dive in further and further into Legend to discover what brilliant mysteries it held. And that, my friends, was the sweetest part of it! It was unpredictable, exciting and full of mystery. I was left guessing throughout. The characters were vivid, unique, realistic and out of this world. I had an exceptionally difficult time hating any of them, especially the villains. June was uptight, determined, fierce and inspirational - a dream kick-ass heroine! Day was, well, DAY! Not only was his reputation as a criminal mastermind appealing but his surprisingly soft personality and crazy good looks had me swooning from page one. The man was intense with a capital "I", I'm telling you! If Legend's story line wasn't enough to hook me in then he would have certainly done the trick. So how about we track back on what I've already made clear; Legend is fantabulous, made of absolute awesome, and is still getting to me after completing it. Yes, I loved it. However, with all that positivity, I do have something to get across. Legend, despite my immense enjoyment, felt like it lacked something. After finishing it and recognizing this feeling, I took the time to think about what it was that was missing. In conclusion? I couldn't see where the series would lead off. Will another exciting development take place in it's sequel? Will it suddenly become a story of revenge? I'm still not quite sure, but I'm confident that Marie Lu won't disappoint me. I mean, heck, she more then satisfied me with her debut novel Legend, so why expect anything less then amazing? Marie Lu's Legend was an exciting, edge of your seat dystopian read with lovable characters and an intriguing dialogue that'll have you hooked instantly.
Date published: 2011-11-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Out-freaking-standing Before I begin my review, know that whatever I say will never bring the justice this book truly deserves. I'm completely floored. I've never read anything like this. The writing is Out-Freaken-Standing!!! With some books it usually takes me a few chapters to get into the story, but I was hooked instantaneously. It felt like I read this in a blink of an eye. 100% consuming. Marie Lu writing is so gripping and raw and forceful. I felt every single emotional imaginable reading this book. Fury, betrayal, hope, joy, swooned and a sadness so deep I cried like alittlefreakenbaby. I love how she didn't give away everything at once. The mysterious surrounding this book was unraveled in his own perfect time, but it never felt frustrating, it just had that sweet sting of anticipation. This has to be some of the strongest writing I've read since the Hunger Games. The setting is truly the most terrifying and horrific world I've seen in a long while. The agony that these characters go through made me feel sick to my stomach. So much evil for something so meaningless. Land. Power. Greed. I loved/adored/worshiped so many characters in this book. Day, John, his mother and Eden. Tess, Kaede, June and Metias. I was totally invested in each of their lives and I actually found myself a bit surprised since this is only the first book in the series and I wouldn't normally feel this strongly about characters right away, but there it is. Day and June are by far one of my favorite couples and I'm not even talking about romance here. They are equally exhilarating!! What can I possible say about Day? I've never meet someone as selfless as him. All he ever wants, all he does, all he thinks about is his family. Help them. Feed them. Cure them. Save them. Even in his most bloodiest state his only thoughts linger on them and that ripped my heart in two. His unflinching fight is awe inspiring and I wish I could quote something that John said to him near the end of the book, it shattered me. So much passion and integrity in a character and you know what? Not once did he do anything out of anger, spite or revenge. His only purpose in life was to live another day to help the ones that matter to him. He is legend. I've never ever been prouder of a character then I am of Day. June was more of a tough one. At the beginning I really loved her. Loved her brilliant mind and the way she looks up to her brother Metias. I respected her. But that respect turned to a fierce hate, so much so that I wanted her broken, but then as the book moves on I started to believe in her once again. I know that it's a lot of different emotions, but if Marie Lu wanted us to struggle with this character as much as she struggled with herself, then I think she did a dame good job of it. I was constantly conflicted throughout most of the story, till the moment I realized I didn't have to be anymore. I'm amazed by how much some of these character effected me so intensely. I don't normally cry for books, but my emotions were strung so high and raw every time a favorite charcter would die. I didn't like the sacrifices that Lu had to use to get her point across, but it was necessary, no matter how much I hated it. Bottom line. This book is freaken AMAZING!! I just don't know how else to say it. The energy this book has is electrifying. I felt dizzy and alive and held my breath and exhaled and paced and bounced from minute one till the very last page. My only thought after reading this book was more. Such an amazing ride. Amazing rush. An Instant favorite!!! One of the best books in 2011!!! Own it. Read it. Devour it. Bring on the movie. Bring on the sequel. Just bring it!
Date published: 2011-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible!! I am so, so impressed with Legend. It is such a fantastic debut, with awesome main characters, intimidating secondary characters, an intense plot and moments that will come out of nowhere and hit you. Very happy I got the chance to read it, and I can't wait to see it translated onto a big screen. I'd definitely recommend Legend, pre-order this one! ~~~ Legend was just an amazing roller coaster of a book. Engaging characters, a sympathetic and exciting storyline and all in such a pretty package, this was a book I could not put down. June is a military prodigy. She scored perfect on her Trial exam and is the youngest student at her university. Day is an elusive criminal, wanted by the country but utterly a mystery to those that want him. They're both extremely intelligent and complex characters, and I found they complemented each other very well. Going between their alternating points of view, how they acted, how they saw each other and dealt with their issues, both internal and external, was like watching an intricate dance, both circling around each other, trying to find a weakness, waiting to strike. It was exhilarating. The murder of Metias, June's older brother and only family, was a hard blow. Even though he appears briefly in a couple scenes, his importance to June, their relationship with each other, is clearly recognized. He was what you would think of as a typical big brother--a little annoying and overbearing but fiercely protective towards his little sister. Day's involvement with Metias's death kickstarts June into taking a leading role in hunting down the elusive criminal, and she gets closer to him than anyone ever has. The realization of what is beginning to develop between them is slow and steady, growing to a point where it could cost one or both of them their lives. It became like this dangerous secret, with hidden meanings and pointed glances, all very forbidden and intense. On top of the great characters, Legend plays out like a giant, violent, unexpected game of cat and mouse. Ms. Lu was not afraid to kick some characters' butts, kill others, or generally make my jaw drop at opportune moments. Who is the cat and who is the mouse changes, leaving you wondering who exactly is calling the shots, who's the prey and predator, who can you trust? Review from my blog: http://allofeverythingforyou.blogspot.com/2011/10/review-legend-by-marie-lu.html
Date published: 2011-11-08

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LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIAREPUBLIC OF AMERICAPOPULATION: 20,174,282PART ONETHE BOYWHO WALKS IN THE LIGHTMY MOTHER THINKS I’M DEAD.Obviously I’m not dead, but it’s safer for her to think so.At least twice a month, I see my Wanted poster flashed on the JumboTrons scattered throughout downtown Los Angeles. It looks out of place up there. Most of the pictures on the screens are of happy things: smiling children standing under a bright blue sky, tourists posing before the Golden Gate Ruins, Republic commercials in neon colors. There’s also anti-Colonies propaganda. “The Colonies want our land,” the ads declare. “They want what they don’t have. Don’t let them conquer your homes! Support the cause!”Then there’s my criminal report. It lights up the JumboTrons in all its multicolored glory:WANTED BY THE REPUBLICFILE NO: 462178-3233 “DAY”-------------------------------------WANTED FOR ASSAULT, ARSON, THEFT, DESTRUCTION OF MILITARY PROPERTY, AND HINDERING THE WAR EFFORT 200,000 REPUBLIC NOTES FOR INFORMATION LEADING TO ARRESTThey always have a different photo running alongside the report. One time it was a boy with glasses and a head full of thick copper curls. Another time it was a boy with black eyes and no hair at all. Sometimes I’m black, sometimes white, sometimes olive or brown or yellow or red or whatever else they can think of.In other words, the Republic has no idea what I look like. They don’t seem to know much of anything about me, except that I’m young and that when they run my fingerprints they don’t find a match in their databases. That’s why they hate me, why I’m not the most dangerous criminal in the country, but the most wanted. I make them look bad.It’s early evening, but it’s already pitch-black outside, and the JumboTrons’ reflections are visible in the street’s puddles. I sit on a crumbling window ledge three stories up, hidden from view behind rusted steel beams. This used to be an apartment complex, but it’s fallen into disrepair. Broken lanterns and glass shards litter the floor of this room, and paint is peeling from every wall. In one corner, an old portrait of the Elector Primo lies faceup on the ground. I wonder who used to live here—no one’s cracked enough to let their portrait of the Elector sit discarded on the floor like that.My hair, as usual, is tucked inside an old newsboy cap. My eyes are fixed on the small one-story house across the road. My hands fiddle with the pendant tied around my neck.Tess leans against the room’s other window, watching me closely. I’m restless tonight and, as always, she can sense it.The plague has hit the Lake sector hard. In the glow of the JumboTrons, Tess and I can see the soldiers at the end of the street as they inspect each home, their black capes shiny and worn loose in the heat. Each of them wears a gas mask. Sometimes when they emerge, they mark a house by painting a big red X on the front door. No one enters or leaves the home after that—at least, not when anyone’s looking.“Still don’t see them?” Tess whispers. Shadows conceal her expression.In an attempt to distract myself, I’m piecing together a makeshift slingshot out of old PVC pipes. “They haven’t eaten dinner. They haven’t sat down by the table in hours.” I shift and stretch out my bad knee.“Maybe they’re not home?”I shoot Tess an irritated glance. She’s trying to console me, but I’m not in the mood. “A lamp’s lit. Look at those candles. Mom would never waste candles if no one was home.”Tess moves closer. “We should leave the city for a couple weeks, yeah?” She tries to keep her voice calm, but the fear is there. “Soon the plague will have blown through, and you can come back to visit. We have more than enough money for two train tickets.”I shake my head. “One night a week, remember? Just let me check up on them one night a week.”“Yeah. You’ve been coming here every night this week.”“I just want to make sure they’re okay.”“What if you get sick?”“I’ll take my chances. And you didn’t have to come with me. You could’ve waited for me back in Alta.”Tess shrugs. “Somebody has to keep an eye on you.” Two years younger than me—although sometimes she sounds old enough to be my caretaker.We look on in silence as the soldiers draw closer to my family’s house. Every time they stop at a home, one soldier pounds on the door while a second stands next to him with his gun drawn. If no one opens the door within ten seconds, the first soldier kicks it in. I can’t see them once they rush inside, but I know the drill: a soldier will draw a blood sample from each family member, then plug it into a handheld reader and check for the plague. The whole process takes ten minutes.I count the houses between where the soldiers are now and where my family lives. I’ll have to wait another hour before I know their fate.A shriek echoes from the other end of the street. My eyes dart toward the sound and my hand whips to the knife sheathed at my belt. Tess sucks in her breath.It’s a plague victim. She must’ve been deteriorating for months, because her skin is cracked and bleeding everywhere, and I find myself wondering how the soldiers could have missed this one during previous inspections. She stumbles around for a while, disoriented, then charges forward, only to trip and fall to her knees. I glance back toward the soldiers. They see her now. The soldier with the drawn weapon approaches, while the eleven others stay where they are and look on. One plague victim isn’t much of a threat. The soldier lifts his gun and aims. A volley of sparks engulfs the infected woman.She collapses, then goes still. The soldier rejoins his comrades.I wish we could get our hands on one of the soldiers’ guns. A pretty weapon like that doesn’t cost much on the market—480 Notes, less than a stove. Like all guns, it has precision, guided by magnets and electric currents, and can accurately shoot a target three blocks away. It’s tech stolen from the Colonies, Dad once said, although of course the Republic would never tell you that. Tess and I could buy five of them if we wanted. . . . Over the years we’ve learned to stockpile the extra money we steal and stash it away for emergencies. But the real problem with having a gun isn’t the expense. It’s that it’s so easy to trace back to you. Each gun has a sensor on it that reports its user’s hand shape, thumbprints, and location. If that didn’t give me away, nothing would. So I’m left with my homemade weapons, PVC pipe slingshots, and other trinkets.“They found another one,” Tess says. She squints to get a better look.I look down and see the soldiers spill from another house. One of them shakes a can of spray paint and draws a giant red X on the door. I know that house. The family that lives there once had a little girl my age. My brothers and I played with her when we were younger—freeze tag and street hockey with iron pokers and crumpled paper.Tess tries to distract me by nodding at the cloth bundle near my feet. “What’d you bring them?”I smile, then reach down to untie the cloth. “Some of the stuff we saved up this week. It’ll make for a nice celebration once they pass the inspection.” I dig through the little pile of goodies inside the bundle, then hold up a used pair of goggles. I check them again to make sure there are no cracks in the glass. “For John. An early birthday gift.” My older brother turns nineteen later this week. He works fourteen-hour shifts in the neighborhood plant’s friction stoves and always comes home rubbing his eyes from the smoke. These goggles were a lucky steal from a military supply shipment.I put them down and shuffle through the rest of the stuff. It’s mostly tins of meat and potato hash I stole from an airship’s cafeteria, and an old pair of shoes with intact soles. I wish I could be in the room with all of them when I deliver this stuff. But John’s the only one who knows I’m alive, and he’s promised not to tell Mom or Eden.Eden turns ten in two months, which means that in two months he’ll have to take the Trial. I failed my own Trial when I was ten. That’s why I worry about Eden, because even though he’s easily the smartest of us three boys, he thinks a lot like I do. When I finished my Trial, I felt so sure of my answers that I didn’t even bother to watch them grade it. But then the admins ushered me into a corner of the Trial stadium with a bunch of other kids. They stamped something on my test and stuffed me onto a train headed downtown. I didn’t get to take anything except the pendant I wore around my neck. I didn’t even get to say good-bye.Several different things could happen after you take the Trial.You get a perfect score—1500 points. No one’s ever gotten this—well, except for some kid a few years ago who the military made a goddy fuss over. Who knows what happens to someone with a score that high? Probably lots of money and power, yeah?You score between a 1450 and a 1499. Pat yourself on the back because you’ll get instant access to six years of high school and then four at the top universities in the Republic: Drake, Stanford, and Brenan. Then Congress hires you and you make lots of money. Joy and happiness follow. At least according to the Republic.You get a good score, somewhere between 1250 and 1449 points. You get to continue on to high school, and then you’re assigned to a college. Not bad.You squeak by with a score between 1000 and 1249. Congress bars you from high school. You join the poor, like my family. You’ll probably either drown while working the water turbines or get steamed to death in the power plants.You fail.It’s almost always the slum-sector kids who fail. If you’re in this unlucky category, the Republic sends officials to your family’s home. They make your parents sign a contract giving the government full custody over you. They say that you’ve been sent away to the Republic’s labor camps and that your family will not see you again. Your parents have to nod and agree. A few even celebrate, because the Republic gives them one thousand Notes as a condolence gift. Money and one less mouth to feed? What a thoughtful government.Except this is all a lie. An inferior child with bad genes is no use to the country. If you’re lucky, Congress will let you die without first sending you to the labs to be examined for imperfections.Five houses remain. Tess sees the worry in my eyes and puts a hand on my forehead. “One of your headaches coming on?”“No. I’m okay.” I peer in the open window at my mother’s house, then catch my first glimpse of a familiar face. Eden walks by, then peeks out the window at the approaching soldiers and points some handmade metal contraption at them. Then he ducks back inside and disappears from view. His curls flash white-blond in the flickering lamplight. Knowing him, he probably built that gadget to measure how far away someone is, or something like that.“He looks thinner,” I mutter.“He’s alive and walking around,” Tess replies. “I’d say that’s a win.”Minutes later, we see John and my mother wander past the window, deep in conversation. John and I look pretty similar, although he’s grown a little stockier from long days at the plant. His hair, like most who live in our sector, hangs down past his shoulders and is tied back into a simple tail. His vest is smudged with red clay. I can tell Mom’s scolding him for something or other, probably for letting Eden peek out the window. She bats John’s hand away when a bout of her chronic coughing hits her. I let out a breath. So. At least all three of them are healthy enough to walk. Even if one of them is infected, it’s early enough that they’ll still have a chance to recover.I can’t stop imagining what will happen if the soldiers mark my mother’s door. My family will stand frozen in our living room long after the soldiers have left. Then Mom will put on her usual brave face, only to sit up through the night, quietly wiping tears away. In the morning, they’ll start receiving small rations of food and water and simply wait to recover. Or die.My mind wanders to the stash of stolen money that Tess and I have hidden. Twenty-five hundred Notes. Enough to feed us for months . . . but not enough to buy my family vials of plague medicine.The minutes drag on. I tuck my slingshot away and play a few rounds of Rock, Paper, Scissors with Tess. (I don’t know why, but she’s crazy good at this game.) I glance several times at my mother’s window, but don’t see anyone. They must have gathered near the door, ready to open it as soon as they hear a fist against the wood.And then the time comes. I lean forward on the ledge, so far that Tess grips my arm to make sure I don’t topple to the ground. The soldiers pound on the door. My mother opens it immediately, lets the soldiers in, and then closes it. I strain to hear voices, footsteps, anything that might come from my house. The sooner this is all over, the sooner I can sneak my gifts to John.The silence drags on. Tess whispers, “No news is good news, right?”“Very funny.”I count off the seconds in my head. One minute passes. Then two, then four, and then finally, ten minutes.Then fifteen minutes. Twenty minutes.I look at Tess. She just shrugs. “Maybe their reader’s broken,” she suggests.Thirty minutes pass. I don’t dare move from my vigil. I’m afraid something will happen so quickly that I’ll miss it if I blink. My fingers tap rhythmically against the hilt of my knife.Forty minutes. Fifty minutes. An hour.“Something’s wrong,” I whisper.Tess purses her lips. “You don’t know that.”“Yes I do. What could possibly take this long?”Tess opens her mouth to reply, but before she can say anything, the soldiers are exiting my house, single file, expressionless. Finally, the last soldier shuts the door behind him and reaches for something tucked at his waist. I suddenly feel dizzy. I know what’s coming.The soldier reaches up and sprays one long, red, diagonal line on our door. Then he sprays another line, making an X.I curse silently under my breath and start to turn away——but then the soldier does something unexpected, something I’ve never seen before.He sprays a third, vertical line on my mother’s door, cutting the X in half.1347 HOURS.DRAKE UNIVERSITY, BATALLA SECTOR.72°F INDOORS.I’M SITTING IN MY DEAN SECRETARY’S OFFICE. AGAIN. On the other side of the frosted glass door, I can see a bunch of my classmates (seniors, all at least four years older than me) hanging around in an attempt to hear what’s going on. Several of them saw me being yanked out of our afternoon drill class (today’s lesson: how to load and unload the XM-621 rifle) by a menacing pair of guards. And whenever that happens, the news spreads all over campus.The Republic’s favorite little prodigy is in trouble again.The office is quiet except for the faint hum coming from the dean secretary’s computer. I’ve memorized every detail of this room (hand-cut marble floors imported from Dakota, 324 plastic square ceiling tiles, twenty feet of gray drapes hanging to either side of the glorious Elector’s portrait on the office’s back wall, a thirty-inch screen on the side wall, with the sound muted and a headline that reads:“TRAITOROUS ‘PATRIOTS’ GROUP BOMBS LOCAL MILITARY STATION, KILLS FIVE” followed by “REPUBLIC DEFEATS COLONIES IN BATTLE FOR HILLSBORO”). Arisna Whitaker, the dean secretary herself, is seated behind her desk, tapping on its glass—no doubt typing up my report. This will be my eighth report this quarter. I’m willing to bet I’m the only Drake student who’s ever managed to get eight reports in one quarter without being expelled.“Injured your hand yesterday, Ms. Whitaker?” I say after a while.She stops typing to glare at me. “What makes you think that, Ms. Iparis?”“The pauses in your keystrokes are off. You’re favoring your left hand.”Ms. Whitaker sighs and leans back in her chair. “Yes, June. I twisted my wrist yesterday in a game of kivaball.”“Sorry to hear it. You should try to swing more from your arm and not from your wrist.”I’d meant this simply to be a statement of fact, but it sounded sort of taunting and doesn’t seem to have made her any happier. “Let’s get something straight, Ms. Iparis,” she says. “You may think you’re very smart. You may think your perfect grades earn you some sort of special treatment. You may even think you have fans at this school, what with all this nonsense.” She gestures at the students gathered outside the door. “But I’ve grown incredibly tired of our get-togethers in my office. And believe me, when you graduate and get assigned to whatever post this country chooses for you, your antics won’t impress your superiors there. Do you understand me?”I nod, because that’s what she wants me to do. But she’s wrong. I don’t just think I’m smart. I’m the only person in the entire Republic with a perfect 1500 score on her Trial. I was assigned here, to the country’s top university, at twelve, four years ahead of schedule. Then I skipped my sophomore year. I’ve earned perfect grades at Drake for three years. I am smart. I have what the Republic considers good genes—and better genes make for better soldiers make for better chance of victory against the Colonies, my professors always say. And if I feel like my afternoon drills aren’t teaching me enough about how to climb walls while carrying weapons, then . . . well, it wasn’t my fault I had to scale the side of a nineteen-story building with a XM-621 gun strapped to my back. It was self-improvement, for the sake of my country.Rumor has it that Day once scaled five stories in less than eight seconds. If the Republic’s most-wanted criminal can pull that off, then how are we ever going to catch him if we’re not just as fast? And if we can’t even catch him, how are we going to win the war?Ms. Whitaker’s desk beeps three times. She holds down a button. “Yes?”“Captain Metias Iparis is outside the gate,” a voice replies. “He’s here for his sister.”“Good. Send him in.” She releases the button and points a finger at me. “I hope that brother of yours starts doing a better job of minding you, because if you end up in my office one more time this quarter—”“Metias is doing a better job than our dead parents,” I reply, maybe more sharply than I intended.We fall into an uncomfortable silence.Finally, after what seems like an eternity, I hear a commotion out in the hall. The students pressed against the door’s glass abruptly disperse, and their shadows move aside to make room for a tall silhouette. My brother.As Metias opens the door and steps inside, I can see some girls out in the hall stifling smiles behind their hands. But Metias fixes his full attention on me. We have the same eyes, black with a gold glint, the same long lashes and dark hair. The long lashes work particularly well for Metias. Even with the door closed behind him, I can still hear the whispers and giggles from outside. It looks like he came from his patrol duties straight to my campus. He’s decked out in his full uniform: black officer coat with double rows of gold buttons, gloves (neoprene, spectra lining, captain rank embroidery), shining epaulettes on his shoulders, formal military hat, black trousers, polished boots. My eyes meet his.He’s furious.Ms. Whitaker gives Metias a brilliant smile. “Ah, Captain!” she exclaims. “It’s a pleasure to see you.”Metias taps the edge of his hat in a polite salute. “It’s unfortunate it’s under these circumstances again,” he replies. “My apologies.”“Not a problem, Captain.” The dean secretary waves her hand dismissively. What a brownnoser—especially after what she’d just said about Metias. “It’s hardly your fault. Your sister was caught scaling a high-rise during her lunch hour today. She’d wandered two blocks off campus to do it. As you know, students are to use only the climbing walls on campus for physical training, and leaving the campus in the middle of the day is forbidden—”“Yes, I’m aware of that,” Metias interrupts, looking at me out of the corner of his eye. “I saw the helicopters over Drake at noon and had a . . . . suspicion June might’ve been involved.”There’d been three helicopters. They couldn’t get me off the side of the building by scaling it themselves, so they pulled me off with a net.“Thank you for your help,” Metias says to the dean secretary. He snaps his fingers at me, my cue to get up. “When June returns to campus, she’ll be on her best behavior.”I ignore Ms. Whitaker’s false smile as I follow my brother out of the office and into the hall. Immediately students hurry over. “June,” a boy named Dorian says as he tags alongside us. He’d asked me (unsuccessfully) to the annual Drake ball two years in a row. “Is it true? How high up did you get?”Metias cuts him off with a stern look. “June’s heading home.” Then he puts a hand firmly on my shoulder and guides me away from my classmates. I glance behind me and manage a smile for them.“Fourteen floors,” I call back. That gets them buzzing again. Somehow, this has become the closest relationship I have with the other Drake students. I am respected, discussed, gossiped about. Not really talked to.Such is the life of a fifteen-year-old senior in a university meant for sixteen and up.Metias doesn’t say another word as we make our way down the corridors, past the manicured lawns of the central quad and the glorious Elector’s statue, and finally through one of the indoor gyms. We pass by the afternoon drills I’m supposed to be participating in. I watch my classmates run along a giant track surrounded by a 360-degree screen simulating some desolate warfront road. They’re holding their rifles out in front of them, attempting to load and unload as fast as they can while running. At most other universities, there wouldn’t be so many student soldiers, but at Drake, almost all of us are well on our way to career assignments in the Republic’s military. A few others are tapped for politics and Congress, and some are chosen to stay behind and teach. But Drake is the Republic’s best university, and seeing as how the best are always assigned into the military, our drill room is packed with students.By the time we reach one of Drake’s outer streets and I climb into the backseat of our waiting military jeep, Metias can barely contain his anger. “Suspended for a week? Do you want to explain this to me?” he demands. “I get back from a morning of dealing with the Patriot rebels and what do I hear about? Helicopters two blocks from Drake. A girl scaling a skyscraper.”I exchange a friendly look with Thomas, the soldier in the driver’s seat. “Sorry,” I mutter.Metias turns around from his place in the passenger seat and narrows his eyes at me. “What the hell were you thinking? Did you know you’d wandered right off campus?”“Yes.”“Of course. You’re fifteen. You went fourteen floors up a—” He takes a deep breath, closes his eyes, and steadies himself. “For once, I’d appreciate it if you would let me do my daily tours of duty without worrying myself sick over what you’re up to.”I try to meet Thomas’s eyes again in the rearview mirror, but he keeps his gaze on the road. Of course, I shouldn’t expect any help from him. He looks as tidy as ever, with his perfectly slicked hair and perfectly ironed uniform. Not a strand or thread out of place. Thomas might be several years younger than Metias and a subordinate on his patrol, but he’s more disciplined than anyone I know. Sometimes I wish I had that much discipline. He probably disapproves of my stunts even more than Metias does.We leave downtown Los Angeles behind and travel up the winding highway in silence. The scenery changes from inner Batalla sector’s hundred-floor skyscrapers to densely packed barrack towers and civilian complexes, each one only twenty to thirty stories high, with red guiding lights blinking on their roofs, most with all their paint stripped off after this year’s rash of storms. Metal support beams crisscross their walls. I hope they get to upgrade those supports soon. The war’s been intense lately, and with several decades of infrastructure funding diverted to supplying the warfront, I don’t know if these buildings would hold up well in another earthquake.After a few minutes, Metias continues in a calmer voice. “You really scared me today,” he says. “I was afraid they’d mistake you for Day and shoot at you.”I know he doesn’t mean this as a compliment, but I can’t help smiling. I lean forward to rest my arms on top of his seat. “Hey,” I say, tugging his ear the way I did when I was a kid, “I’m sorry I made you worry.”He lets out a scornful chuckle, but I can tell his anger is already fading. “Yeah. That’s what you say every time, Junebug. Is Drake not keeping your brain busy enough? If not, then I don’t know what will.”“You know . . . if you’d just take me along on some of your missions, I’d probably learn a lot more and stay out of trouble.”“Nice try. You’re not going anywhere until you graduate and get assigned to your own patrol.”I bite my tongue. Metias did pick me once—once—for a mission last year, when all third-year Drake students had to shadow an assigned military branch. His commander sent him to kill a runaway prisoner of war from the Colonies. So Metias brought me along with him, and together we chased the POW deeper and deeper into our territory, away from the dividing fences and the strip of land running from Dakota to West Texas that separates the Republic and the Colonies, away from the warfront where airships dot the sky. I tracked him into an alley in Yellowstone City, Montana, and Metias shot him.During the chase, I broke three ribs and had a knife buried in my leg. Now Metias refuses to take me anywhere.When Metias finally speaks again, he sounds grudgingly curious. “So, tell me,” he whispers. “How fast did you climb those fourteen stories?”Thomas makes a disapproving sound in his throat, but I break into a grin. Storm’s past. Metias loves me again. “Six minutes,” I whisper back to my brother. “And forty-four seconds. How do you like that?”“That must be some sort of record. Not that, you know, you’re supposed to do it.”Thomas stops the jeep right behind the lines at a red light and gives Metias an exasperated look. “Come on, Captain,” he says. “June—ah—Ms. Iparis won’t learn a thing if you keep praising her for breaking the rules.”“Cheer up, Thomas.” Metias reaches over and claps him on the back. “Surely breaking a rule once in a while is tolerable, especially if you’re doing it to beef up your skills for the Republic’s sake. Victory against the Colonies. Right?”The light blinks green. Thomas turns his eyes back to the road (he seems to count to three in his head before letting the jeep go forward). “Right,” he mutters. “You should still be careful what you’re encouraging Ms. Iparis to do, especially with your parents gone.”Metias’s mouth tightens into a line, and a familiar, strained look appears in his eyes.No matter how sharp my intuition is, no matter how well I do at Drake or how perfectly I score in defense and target practice and hand-to-hand combat, Metias’s eyes always hold that fear. He’s afraid something might happen to me one day—like the car crash that took our parents. That fear never leaves his face. And Thomas knows it.I didn’t know our parents long enough to miss them in the same way Metias does. Whenever I cry over losing them, I cry because Idon’t have any memories of them. Just hazy recollections of long, adult legs shuffling around our apartment and hands lifting me from my high chair. That’s it. Every other memory from my childhood—looking out into the auditorium as I receive an award, or having soup made for me when I’m sick, or being scolded, or tucked into bed—those are with Metias.We drive past half of Batalla sector and through a few poor blocks. (Can’t these street beggars stay a little farther from our jeep?) Finally we reach the gleaming, terraced high-rises of Ruby, and we’re home. Metias gets out first. As I follow, Thomas gives me a small smile.“See you later, Ms. Iparis,” he says, tipping his hat.I stopped trying to convince him to call me June—he’ll never change. Still, it’s not so bad being called something proper. Maybe when I’m older and Metias doesn’t faint at the idea of me dating . . .“Bye, Thomas. Thanks for the ride.” I smile back at him before stepping out of the jeep.Metias waits until the door has slammed shut before turning to me and lowering his voice. “I’ll be home late tonight,” he says. There’s that tension in his eyes again. “Don’t go out alone. News from the warfront is they’re cutting power to residences tonight to save energy for the airfield bases. So stay put, okay? The streets’ll be darker than usual.”My heart sinks. I wish the Republic would hurry up and win this war already so that for once we might actually get a whole month of nonstop electricity. “Where are you going? Can I come with you?”“I’m overseeing the lab at Los Angeles Central. They’re delivering vials of some mutated virus there—it shouldn’t take all night. And I already told you no. No missions.” Metias hesitates. “I’ll be home as early as I can. We have a lot to talk about.” He puts his hands on my shoulders, ignores my puzzled look, and gives me a quick kiss on my forehead. “Love you, Junebug,” he says, his trademark good-bye. He turns to climb back into the jeep.“I’m not going to wait up for you,” I call after him, but by now he’s already inside and the jeep’s pulling away with him inside of it. “Be careful,” I murmur.But it’s pointless to say now. Metias is too far away to hear me.WHEN I WAS SEVEN YEARS OLD, MY FATHER CAME home from the warfront for a week’s leave. His job was to clean up after the Republic’s soldiers, so he was usually gone, and Mom was left to raise us boys on her own. When he came home that time, the city patrols did a routine inspection of our house, then dragged Dad off to the local police headquarters for questioning. They’d found something suspicious, I guess.The police brought him back with two broken arms, his face bloody and bruised.Several nights later, I dipped a ball of crushed ice into a can of gasoline, let the oil coat the ice in a thick layer, and lit it. Then I launched it with a slingshot through the window of our local police headquarters. I remember the fire trucks that came whizzing around the corner shortly thereafter, and the charred remains of the police building’s west wing. They never found out who did it, and I never came forward. There was, after all, no evidence. I had committed my first perfect crime.My mother used to hope that I would rise up from my humble roots. Become someone successful, or even famous.I’m famous all right, but I don’t think it’s what she had in mind.It’s nightfall again, a good forty-eight hours since the soldiers marked my mother’s door.I wait in the shadows of a back alley one block from the Los Angeles Central Hospital and watch its staff spill in and out of the main entrance. It’s a cloudy night with no moon, and I can’t even make out the crumbling Bank Tower sign at the top of the building. Electric lights shine from each floor—a luxury only government buildings and the elite’s homes can afford. Military jeeps stack up along the street as they wait for approval to enter the underground parking lots. Someone checks them for proper IDs. I keep still, my eyes fixed on the entrance.I look pretty awesome tonight. I’m wearing my good pair of shoes—boots made of dark leather worn soft over time, with strong laces and steel toes. Bought them with 150 Notes from our stash. I’ve hidden a knife flat against the sole of each boot. When I shift my feet, I can feel the cool metal against my skin. My black trousers are tucked into my boots and I carry a pair of gloves and a black handkerchief in my pockets. A dark, long-sleeved shirt is tied around my waist. My hair hangs loose down my shoulders. This time I’ve sprayed my white-blond strands a deep black, as if I’d dipped them in crude oil. Earlier in the day, Tess had traded five Notes for a bucket of pygmy pig’s blood from the back alley of a kitchen. My arms, stomach, and face are smeared with it. I’ve also streaked mud on my cheeks, for good measure.The hospital spans the first twelve floors of the building, but I’m only interested in the one without windows. That’s the third floor, a laboratory, where the blood samples and medicines will be. From the outside, the third floor is completely hidden behind elaborate stone carvings and worn Republic flags. Behind the facade lies a vast floor with no halls and no doors—just a gigantic room, doctors and nurses behind white masks, test tubes and pipettes, incubators and gurneys. I know this because I’ve been there before. I was there the day I failed my Trial, the day I was supposed to die.My eyes scan the side of the tower. Sometimes I can break into a building by running it from the outside, if there are balconies to leap from and window ledges to balance on. I once scaled a four-story building in less than five seconds. But this tower is too smooth, with no footholds. I’ll have to reach the lab from inside. I shiver a little even in the warmth and wish I’d asked Tess to come with me. But two trespassers are easier to catch than one. Besides, it’s not her family who needs medicine. I check to make sure I’ve tucked my pendant beneath my shirt.A lone medic truck pulls up behind the military jeeps. Several soldiers climb out and greet the nurses while others unpack the truck’s boxes. The leader of the group is a young, dark-haired man dressed all in black, except for two rows of silver buttons that line his officer jacket. I strain to hear what he’s saying to one of the nurses.“—from around the lake’s edge.” The man tightens his gloves. I catch a glimpse of the gun at his belt. “My men will be at the entrances tonight.”“Yes, Captain,” the nurse says.The man tips his cap to her. “My name’s Metias. If you have any questions, come see me.”I wait until the soldiers have spread out around the hospital’s perimeter and the man named Metias has immersed himself in conversation with two of his men. Several more medic trucks come and go, dropping off soldiers, some with broken limbs, some with gashes on their heads or lacerations on their legs. I take a deep breath, then step out of the shadows and stumble toward the hospital’s entrance.A nurse spots me first, just outside the main doors. Her eyes dart to the blood on my arms and face. “Can I be admitted, cousin?” I call to her. I wince in imaginary pain. “Is there still room tonight? I can pay.”She looks at me without pity before she returns to scribbling on a notepad. Guess she doesn’t appreciate the “cousin” affection. An ID tag dangles from her neck. “What happened?” she asks.I double over when I reach her and lean on my knees. “Was in a fight,” I say, panting. “I think I got stabbed.”The nurse doesn’t look at me again. She finishes writing and then nods at one of the guards. “Pat him down.”I stay where I am as two soldiers check me for weapons. I yelp on cue when they touch my arms or stomach. They don’t find the knives tucked in my boots. They do take the little pouch of Notes tied to my belt, my payment for entering the hospital. Of course.If I was a goddy rich sector boy, I’d be admitted without charge. Or they’d send a doctor for free straight up to where I live.When the soldiers give the nurse a thumbs-up, she points me toward the entrance. “Waiting room’s on the left. Have a seat.”I thank her and stumble toward the sliding doors. The man named Metias watches me as I pass. He’s listening patiently to one of his soldiers, but I see him study my face as if out of habit. I make a mental note of his face too.The hospital is ghostly white on the inside. To my left I see the waiting room, just like the nurse said, a huge space packed with people sporting injuries of all shapes and sizes. Many of them moan in pain—one person lies unmoving on the floor. I don’t want to guess how long some of them have been here, or how much they had to pay to get in. I note where all the soldiers are standing—two by the secretary’s window, two by the doctor’s door far in the distance, several near the elevators, each wearing ID tags—and then I drop my eyes to the floor. I shuffle to the closest chair and sit. For once, my bad knee helps my disguise. I keep my hands pressed against my side for good measure.I count ten minutes off in my head, long enough so that new patients have arrived in the waiting room and the soldiers are less interested in me. Then I stand up, pretend to stumble, and lurch toward the closest soldier. His hand reflexively moves to his gun.“Sit back down,” he says.I trip and fall against him. “I need the bathroom,” I whisper, my voice hoarse. My hands tremble as I grab his black robes for balance. The soldier looks at me in disgust while some of the others snicker. I see his fingers creep closer to his gun’s trigger, but one of the other soldiers shakes his head. No shooting in the hospital. The soldier pushes me away and points toward the end of the hall with his gun.“Over there,” he snaps. “Wipe some of that filth off your face. And if you touch me again, I’ll fill you with bullets.”

Editorial Reviews

Praise for Marie Lu’s New York Times bestseller LEGEND: From USA TODAY:"Marie Lu's dystopian novel is a Legend in the making." From ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY:“Fine writing and excellent execution. Sequel, please!” From THE NEW YORK TIMES:“Legend doesn’t merely survive the hype, it deserves it.”  From USA TODAY:“Marie Lu’s dystopian novel is a ‘Legend’ in the making.”  From THE LOS ANGELES TIMES:“an action-packed love story full of inventive details.”  STARRED REVIEW from PUBLISHERS WEEKLY:“Lu’s debut is a stunner. . . raises hopes high for the sequels to come. ”  STARRED REVIEW from KIRKUS REVIEWS: “A gripping thriller in dystopic future Los Angeles. This is no didactic near-future warning of present evils, but a cinematic adventure featuring endearing, compelling heroes.”  STARRED REVIEW from BOOKLIST: “[D]elicious details keep pages turning . . . you’ve got the makings for a potent sequel.”  STARRED REVIEW from VOYA: “A fast-paced blend of action and science fiction (with only a hint of potential romance) means that this one will likely appeal to male and female readers alike.  Debut author Lu has managed a great feat—emulating a highly successful young adult series while staying true to her own voice. Legend will give Hunger Games fans something worthwhile to read.”  STARRED REVIEW from LIBRARY MEDIA CONNECTION: “This book stands out . . .”  FROM KAMI GARCIA, New York Times bestselling co-author of the Beautiful Creatures trilogy“A romantic thriller set in a post-apocalyptic world where nothing is what it seems—Legend is impossible to put down and even harder to forget.”  FROM SARAH REES BRENNAN, author of The Demon Lexicon trilogy“A compelling dystopic world, with diverse characters, high tension and political intrigue. [If] you liked the Hunger Games, you'll love this.” ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Don't miss the highly-anticipated sequel, PRODIGY!Featured on ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY’S MUST-LIST! From THE LOS ANGELES TIMES:“Marie Lu has beaten the curse with Prodigy. . . it has all the chivalry of Robin Hood and all the shine and grime of Blade Runner . . . The well-drawn worlds, political undercurrents and the believability of the characters make it all feel fresh . . . Lu proves that a Book 2 needn't play second fiddle, providing intrigue and deep pleasure all its own.”  From THE NEW YORK JOURNAL OF BOOKS: “. . . clear your calendar to allow yourself the luxury of reading this book in one or two sittings. You will be shaken . . .”  STARRED REVIEW from PUBLISHERS WEEKLY: “Lu opts for a high simmer of intrigue in her sequel to Legend…taut and insightful.”  STARRED REVIEW from SHELF AWARENESS:“Stunning follow-up to Legend . . . The thrilling action and futuristic settings are sure to please fans of Divergent.”